Carol Spieckerman's Brain On ... Retail's Mini-to-Massive Movement

In her latest contribution as a Retail Wire panelist, Carol calls out that small doesn't fit all when it comes to new retail formats.

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Here's what she had to say ... Although diminutive formats are getting a lot of attention these days, I've written and spoken quite a bit lately about the new reasons why bulkier boxes are enjoying a selective resurgence. Some of them, like Walgreens' Manhattan mega-store are what we call "proto-ships," a cross between a flagship and a prototype that allow retailers to vet new brands, products, categories, and concepts under one roof rather than pushing them out chain-wide and seeing what sticks. Retailers can then decide whether to replicate the entire concept in new markets or deconstruct various elements and deploy them to existing locations. Looking at the category expansion that Menards and Forever 21 are taking on in their big boxes, they would seem to fit the proto-ship model as well.